Sunday, October 23, 2005

To London because of you, part 1

Dear Marc, I once went to London because of you. I even made my mom go there with me. We were on an important expedition; to hunt down a perfect pair of Marc Jacobs boots and bring them back to Stockholm, dead or alive. At least this was my purpose with the trip. Mom thought we went to have a great time together and perhaps try the scones at Liberty’s.

Have you been to Stockholm? It is a great town. A beautiful city by the water. The people are healthy and happy, brought up on crisp bread and milk. We have many great things, but I couldn’t find the perfect pair of boots to save my ass. Who am I kidding; I wasn’t saving my ass if it came to that. According to word on the street, London was the right place to go to find appropriate footwear. And if you're not listening to word on the street in matters of the feet, drop your ears –you’re not using them. So I purchased tickets for two to England and called mom up to tell her the happy news.

I wanted to make this trip a great time for us. My mom is such a marvelous 5-foot being. I wanted to give her the luxury she’s not used to. I wished nothing but the best for her, an Agatha Christie-inspired hotel with a fire burning, a tea pot at the ready and a bed made up with such puffy pillows and comforters that I might never find her again after she’s gone to bed. She’s not used to luxury, she likes to stay in youth hostels. She always keeps a teabag in her wallet. She has little packages of condiments in her handbag just in case. She’s saving up for bigger, better thing than splurging on a rotten cup of Yellow Label, if she can help it.

I searched the net for the best hotel deals and finally found a place that seemed ideal. It had just the right feel. But it was fully booked. And so it went. Until we ended up with a shithole in the hotel district. One of those awful London hotels, where the wall to wall to ceiling carpeting keeps you from worrying about the state of the world simply by offering the ingenious alternative: Worry about what may be left in the carpeting instead!

I was so disappointed and my mother was so proud. Think of all the money I had saved by checking into this hotel instead of the ridiculously expensive ones I had suggested earlier! It was great seeing her in such a great mood, but I felt as such a failure. I had wanted to show her the golden side of life. Oh well. Tomorrow, luxury, I said and turned off the light.

The next day, fueled by all the power that a gray bowl of oatmeal can bring, we were on our way to find you, in the shape of two shapely boots. First off, Selfridge’s. What a place. I felt like Paris freaking Hilton looking into her closet. Or perhaps a closet belonging to, what’s her name, Hugh Grants girlie with the big hair? I felt like her. Except that I was holding hands with a 60-year old woman instead of Hugh. Who cares, they had everything at Selfridges! Things that I had only seen on the pages of fashion magazines! And in every color. The materials, the cuts, the shit. You must know, you must have been there hundreds of times. Now, the woman who was not Hugh Grant, did not share my opinion. She said “I think the stuff here is too expensive, too impractical, too over the top”. Which, if you sum it up, is the exact equation of luxury. I tried to get her to understand, but clearly “Mom, that’s the point” was not the eye opener I had hoped for.

She was wearing her usual getup – comfy black pants (a little too short), a navy windbreaker jacket, fleece scarf and crowning this vision of reasonable clothing was the kind of knitted hat that kids wear. Or wore in the 80’s. Acrylic, with a little pom-pom dangling on a little string.

shit. must go. will write more soon.

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